By Kiersten B, Auxiliar de Conversación in Murcia 19/20.
There is no better time to be in the field of teaching English. Primarily, because there are so many resources to help you. For those who may be teaching English for the first time, you may be a little stuck on what to do and which activities to use. You may also be a little unsure about your role as an Auxiliar de Conversación. Your role can vary depending on the school you are in, as you may have the opportunity to lead an entire class or work within small groups.
Even though you aren’t going to be teaching every day, it’s good to be prepared with different resources, games, and activities you can use to help your students better learn. So where can you go to find resources to help you make learning in the classroom fun? Here are 12 online resources you can use for all your teaching needs.
1. ISL Collective
This is a great website for multiple levels. Here, you can find not only worksheets but video lessons as well. The website takes fun videos you would find on YouTube and add interactive questions to practice grammar and comprehension. You can even use this website to look for online teaching jobs. This is also a great website to find worksheets you can easily print out and use within the classroom.
Everyone loves YouTube. This year, the teachers at my school have used YouTube in many ways. This would range from morning routines, with songs for days of the week and the weather, to more calm activities such as instructional videos on how to draw different characters. In many cases, you can show a video on YouTube that can help to continue the learning of different subjects like science.
This is a great website to use if you have access to a computer in your classroom. You can create your own games and then conduct live games in the classroom.
Another website with different levels of learning. This is a great resource for many reasons: one, it uses British English, which many of the children are familiar with, and there are many resources from worksheets, games, classroom activities, and more.
This is the perfect website if you need to prepare a lesson in a hurry. Here, you will find completely finished and beautifully made PowerPoints and lesson plans that you can download for free. I used this website to download a PowerPoint for World Wildlife Day. The PowerPoints come with not only great information but also colorful pictures and videos that are really engaging for the students.
6. Teaching Tolerance
This is a wonderful website with different resources on non-traditional topics. On the website, you can find lesson plans on topics such as human rights, civil rights, inequality, gender difference, and more humanitarian topics. The goal of this website is to promote and teach the idea of inclusiveness amongst the youth.
7. ESL- galaxy
It is another one-time website for almost all of your teaching needs. Not only is it a great resource for young learners, but it’s also a fantastic website to find material for adult learners. Here you can find games to play, printable worksheets and board games, flashcards, and more. If you happen to be working with adults or business professionals, there is a resource for that as well.
This is a fun website for students in the primary grade levels. On the website, you’ll find hundreds of fun and interactive online games to play with the children.
This is a helpful website, no matter if you are a novice or a seasoned teacher. There are in-depth articles to help you with teaching, such as tips on classroom management.
This website lives up to its name. It is an online resource of fun worksheets that can literally save the day. If you don’t have time to create an entire lesson plan, you can easily find and print out worksheets.
11. Facebook groups
Another great resource is the other Auxiliaries. Everyone is most likely experiencing the same time in their classrooms. The Facebook group is a great way to bounce ideas off of each other and share other resources that actually work. For my year of teaching, the Facebook groups became very helpful, especially during the holidays such as Christmas, Thanksgiving, Halloween, and Easter.
Teachers may ask you to give a presentation on how these holidays are celebrated in your country. This is a great opportunity to share slides with other Auxiliaries, thus, making the work easier for you. Also, if you have no idea how to do a presentation for younger learners, you can ask other Auxiliaries who are also working with a younger age group.
In this day and age, everyone has an Instagram account. Although you’ll probably be using Instagram to snap photos of your new life in Spain, it can also be a great teaching resource. By following hashtags such as #eslteachers or #esllearning, you can follow what other teachers are doing in their classrooms. Not only is this a great resource to use for classroom activities, but it’s a great place to learn and grow as a teacher as well. For those times, when you are working one on one with students or working in a small group, you can use the strategies you find on Instagram to better your teaching technique.
Although all 12 resources seem like a lot and more than you’ll probably need, it’s important to remember that your imagination and intuition are the best resources you have. There were many times when I had something planned, but things didn’t go exactly the way I wanted them to. However, with a little imagination, I was able to turn things around. (And also, it’s always necessary to have a backup plan!).
I like to use Kahoot. Many students get lost and confused at first, but when they get used to this format, they get interested and excited about winning and doing better.
I also often use resources from this list: http://edu.ajlc.waterloo.on.ca/index.php/node/96 Tongue Twisters and various games, as well as podcasts that I recommend to my students.